BFS celebrates £10m lending milestone
Business Finance Solutions is celebrating a major milestone after completing the delivery of £10million of finance.
The alternative loan provider has provided business support to more than 2,385 entrepreneurs across the north west as part of the Government's Start Up Loans initiative.
The entrepreneur who has taken lending to the £10m mark is Chris Pimlott, owner and Director of Stockport based MyBuzz, an IT consultancy that specialises in creating apps.
MyBuzz began trading earlier this year and has used the £25k Start Up Loan to support the launch of MyShiftPlanner an innovative mobile app that enables people working shifts to manage their rotas.
It enables workers to manage their work and home lives online rather than via complex spreadsheets, sharing information about working hours, holidays, holiday requests, shift swaps, training, sick days and on-call rotas with family and friends.
Since its launch, the application has had over 200,000 downloads across 80 countries.
Paul Breen, Director of Business Finance Solutions, said: “Reaching this £10m loan milestone in the north west is positive proof that the region truly is readying itself for the opportunities that the Northern Powerhouse will present in the months and years to come.
"Programmes like Start Up Loans are enabling hundreds of ambitious, hardworking entrepreneurs just like Chris to trade, employ people and boost communities; all factors that are critical to the future prosperity and growth potential of this region.
“But it’s not just being able to access funding that makes these companies such valuable additions to the entrepreneurial landscape. Chris was referred to us after working with the Business Growth Hub, illustrating just how the Manchester Growth Company’s joined up growth programmes are helping to make the North West one of the best and most exciting places in the UK to start a business.”
Using the MyShiftPlanner model Chris is already expanding into the business market with a complementary product scheduled to launch next year.
MyShiftPlanner for Business provides businesses of any size with web-based tools to manage shift rotas for entire teams and will enable the company to expand into a range of corporate, support and service industries, both in the UK and globally.
Chris said: "We wanted to find a simple answer to a common problem and the Start Up Loans funding has meant that we are able to help workers and businesses alike with our new apps that put work patterns and shifts at their fingertips.
“Over 3.5million people in the UK commonly work shifts, from staff in the NHS and the fire service to restaurant and shop workers.
"These may well change weekly and keeping track of working hours can be difficult if you have to rely on paper schedules, especially when you also have a busy home life and need to plan time with family and friends. The team at BFS immediately saw the potential of our business idea and, having launched the first app, we’re now talking to a number of large businesses about implementing the corporate version with their HR teams.”
Sir Richard Leese, Greater Manchester Combined Authority’s lead member for Business Support and Finance added: “The £10m milestone for the north west reflects the success of the Start Up Loans programme which has now made loans to over 40,000 entrepreneurs, together with mentoring and other business support.
"The job creation potential of these start-up businesses is enormous, and we must continue to do all we can to create the conditions in which they can survive and thrive.”